Saturday, September 07, 2019

Turkey Trot

Saturday morning and time to go home. The inn  is so lovely and the staff are terrific, especially in the restaurant. Breakfast is included with our rooms and you get to pick four items from the menu plus toast or biscuit. Coffee, tea and orange juice is included. So much better than in the hotel chains with their all carb buffets.

Checked out and got Sirius at the nearby kennel. We drove on country roads with minty green trees and foliage. We made a stop in Edgefield with a small town square and a chance to stretch our legs. The town's theme is turkeys.

In the town square were memorials and a statue of hometown hero, Strom Thurmond. He was one of 10 local men to become governor of South Carolina.

Sign outside the hardware store.

County Courthouse.

Friday, September 06, 2019

Surfin' Bird

Birds are the word here in Greenwood. The cute town has wooden birds hidden in plain view along Main Street. In the morning I took a walk and found one bird, a Carolina Chickadee.

Some more sights along Main Street on my walk.

Local skyscraper.

Welcome and Arts Center

Museum in an old store building.

Veteran's Center.

Lots of gardens and water features make this street very pretty. Bee habitat - don't get too close.

Then it was time for breakfast in the dining room and an appointment with Nick to ride around the campus and the community. We were all very impressed, especially the expansive medical center and facilities. We saw some upscale housing developments and shopping streets. This beautiful yellow brick home was purchased from a Sears Roebuck catalog.

Then we drove out to Lake Greenwood which has over 200 miles of shoreline. So beautiful. Nick took us to lunch at a great place overlooking the water and we were all so happy.

Time to ask questions and say goodbye. We may come back in a few years as we were all impressed with the facilities, houses, villas and apartments. Back at the hotel I decided to take another walk to The Museum. On the way I spotted two more wooden birds.

Located on Main Street, this free museum had two special exhibits and a permanent exhibit and I enjoyed all of it.

First there was an exhibit about the printed word with old typewriters and a history of printed language. This was sponsored by the local newspaper celebrating its 100th anniversary. They had an old Underwood model that we had at our house when I was a kid.

Then I saw the permanent exhibit about history of the area and development of the town. I learned a lot about South Carolina. First is a farmer using a small cotton gin. Then a small general store, a milliner, train station, one room school house and blacksmith. All very well done.

Upstairs was a traveling exhibit on cats. This big tiger wouldn't fit in the elevator, so he was on the first floor.

Fascinating animals and videos about lions and tigers around the world. I watched a wonderful movie about Siberian tigers. There was also taxidermy animals from Africa and North America. Really a lovely and educational place.

On the walk home I found a few more birds and then returned for a nap.

Jeff and I had dinner at Southern Soul which is mostly fried food within walking distance of the hotel. Then we had another match of Samba with Jan and Harvey in the beautiful lobby. Time for bed as we are driving home tomorrow.

Thursday, September 05, 2019


Thursday morning is another beautiful day and the news is that Dorian passed our area at sea. Little rain and no winds left us unscathed. We are so lucky, but so sad for the Bahamas and the communities to our north in South and North Carolina.

We drove about two hours northwest to Greenwood, SC. We checked into a darling small hotel (Inn on the Square) on the Main Street of town and met Jan and Harvey.

We are here to look at a continuing care residential community (CCRC) for when we decide we no longer want to stay in our homes. I hope that is a long time away. Actually, dear friends are moving there and we wanted to check it out. We drove out to the CCRC and met with a marketing representative named Nick. He is very good at his job, friendly and solved every problem. We had to bring Sirius with us and he toured the main building with us and we had lunch on the patio. We did more looking around and later we took Sirius to a kennel for two nights and returned to the hotel. They are pet friendly, but dogs are not allowed to stay in the room without their people. That is a bit of a problem. So we returned to the CCRC for a lovely dinner and then the four of us played Samba in the empty cafe area.

Wednesday, September 04, 2019

Blowing in the Wind

Hurricane Dorian is heading towards our home and we have decided to evacuate. It is a nasty storm, but may dissipate before it reaches us. So we put up our storm shutters and left on an already planned vacation to Charlotte, NC, and then to Greenwood, SC.

On Monday the governor declared a state of emergency and a mandatory evacuation. This closed many roads, stores and gas stations. By Tuesday morning nothing had happened and things loosened up a bit. Meanwhile we prepared our house and left early with a full tank of gas, a cooler with food and Sirius, our dog. The day was clear and sunny and there was no traffic so we drove easily to Charlotte which took about five hours. We checked into a brand new Holiday Inn Express, south of the city. Sirius is behaving very well, but not a fan of the elevator. Poor guy is so scared and relieved when the doors open and we get out.

Dinner time we were invited to see friends we had met in Panama. Alina and Greg now live in a community at the top edge of South Carolina, just minutes from our hotel.  We had a great time reminiscing about our time in Boquete and other travels. Both of them are interested in birds and wildlife and we had all met on a birding hike.

We got back to the hotel and Sirius was so happy to see us and go out for a walk. We have three bus loads of college football players staying here for the evacuation from a school near Charleston. Every day they go to USC in Columbia to practice and play against them this Saturday.

Woke up Wednesday to another sunny day and relaxed before heading into Charlotte to tour. We went to the Levine Museum which follows Charlotte and Southern life in this Piedmont area from the Civil War to present day with emphasis on the Black community and civil rights. It turns out to be an excellent museum with great displays, movies and photos. Very educational and well worth our visit.  The photos are Jeff and me posing with raw cotton and a large cotton gin from a textile factory.

These machines bale cotton and then spindle and weave. These were days before child labor laws and many spent their youth doing back breaking work for long hours instead of going to school.

Belk Department Store had an early beginning in the south and still in business today. This is what the store looked like many years ago.

Southern Power and Duke Energy brought electricity to these rural areas.

FDR came to Charlotte and spoke to a huge crowd telling them about the New Deal and how life would become better for them.

Sad to remember that white and colord people had to drink from different fountains. The one on the left had refrigerated cold water.

A movie in this bus was about school segregation in the south.

Displays of foods from different parts of the country and different ethnic groups. Notice the Manischewitz Latke Mix in the Northern section and Dr. Brown's soda along with Cape Cod chips and Tastykakes..

We spent about two hours and then headed to a recommended place for lunch. On the way we saw this food market and this interesting building.

Drove to the NoDa section of the city which is newly refurbished, artsy and is north of Davidson street. Ate at Haberdish which is a fusion of southern cooking with a modern flair.

We enjoyed it and found the food delicious. Honestly had the best dried tomato, basil quiche ever with a lovely arugula and goat cheese salad. We tried several sides and one cracked me up. Mac and cheese with fried chicken skins. I call that Grivenas, however it is spelled. A special treat my mother would make, frying  up chicken skin in schmaltz (fat.) This dish was too spicy for me to enjoy, but gave me a laugh.

Came back to rescue Sirius and take him for a long walk. He gobbled up his dinner and seemed very satisfied. We are meeting friends for dinner after a rest break. Alina and Greg will join us with Elly and Sandy who live nearby. Elly and Jeff were good friends in junior and high school. Have not seen her in the last 50 years and anxious to talk about the good old days in Trenton. We all met for dinner at a Mexican restaurant near our hotel. So much fun talking and catching up and introducing our friends to each other. Afterwards we went back to Elly and Sandy's home in Sun City Carolina Lakes. It is a smaller community than ours and truly beautiful with rolling hills and lots of water. We toured their home with Elly's beautiful paintings adorning the walls and then had dessert and talked some more. A wonderful evening.